Bucks County Herald

Filmmaker requests use of Upper Makefield police office for documentary


Debbie Wright addressed the Upper Makefield Board of Supervisors on Oct. 3 about a film documentary on abolitionists.

She stated that a neighbor’s arrest on child pornography charges set her on a path away from the pharmaceutical industry and towards a focus on human trafficking and slavery that occurs “in our own backyards.”

Wright, who is producing the film, hopes to raise awareness through the stories of abolitionists who fight for the freedoms of those caught in the trafficking industry. She expressed a desire to film locally and include small clips involving local police. She stated that any identifying information of either the location or personnel would be hidden.

Township Solicitor Mary Eberle suggested tight control over the process was prudent to ensure legal safeguards for the township. When Wright stated that she has filmed similar scenes in other townships, supervisor Diana Nolan suggested the supervisors review the film as it is currently.

Wright responded that it was about three hours of several rough cuts that would not give any true representation of the project until post-processing was further along.

Supervisor Dan Rattigan suggested giving direction to the township solicitor to engage in discussion with Wright and a meeting was set up.

Supervisor Mike Tierney objected to the composition of minutes from a previous meeting that indicated his physical absence and participation by phone, saying that inconsistencies in that communication were neither acknowledged nor properly characterized.

It was suggested that he submit a revised version of the minutes, which Eberle indicated would be adopted through a majority vote of the board.

Director of Planning and Zoning David Kuhns discussed the Laughlin planning module for on-lot sewage treatment systems. Kuhns recommended approval, which passed by a unanimous board vote.

Interim Township Manager David Nyman introduced a resolution to authorize the execution of a master utility casting agreement with PennDOT. The agreement would allow PennDOT to work directly with storm sewer drain castings during road work and repaving operations and bill the township accordingly.

Nyman stated that the cost of doing so through PennDOT was “probably as good as anyone’s price.”

The resolution passed in a 5-0 vote.

Nyman also recommended three bid awards. The board unanimously approved the sale of a Kubota mower to Dan Chambers of Punxatawney for $2,150, a generator to Ken Pfleger of Washington Crossing for $155 and a 1995 international trailer to Richard Berger of Roslindale, Mass., for $2,750.

The resignation of the full-time planning and zoning administrative assistant was accepted by the board without dissent. A motion to advertise a replacement was passed with Tierney’s suggestion that the supervisors be more directly involvement in the process. The motion was amended accordingly, with the planning and zoning department conducting the initial interview and forwarding the applicant to the board.

A separate motion was approved to hire a temporary replacement.

Bids for the renovation of the Lookout Park building were submitted, ranging from $59,824 to $82,077.

Premier Builders of Yardley was approved by the board unanimously at the low bid price, falling within the $80,000 budget for the project.

Resident Bobbi Bralynski complained to the board about the possible future installation of a sidewalk on her property to allow access for nearby residents to the canal path.

Kuhns suggested that the project has not matured to the point of involving her property and in fact may not progress to that point at all. He assured her that if it did move forward, her participation would be required to negotiate any easement on her property.

The sidewalk would provide safer pedestrian access from the Buckland Valley Farms north gate on River Road to the canal towpath.



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